High Desert Museum

Learn about central Oregon’s culture and come face to face with its wildlife, including birds of prey, bobcats, badgers and more, at Bend’s unique museum.

Discover Oregon’s High Desert at the High Desert Museum. See wildlife up-close, meet living history characters and explore exhibits about the area’s history and culture.

See over 100 wild animals that call the High Desert Museum home. All of the animals were rescued and cannot live in the wild due to injuries or lack of survival tactics. Observe otters, porcupines, wild cats and more. There are eagles, hawks, owls and other feathered creatures in the Donald M. Kerr Birds of Prey Center. Watch the birds take flight in the popular Raptors of the Desert Sky seasonal show.

Stop by the Desertarium and see the gila monster, king snake, boa snake and other animals that live in the High Desert. Touch scaly lizards and tortoise shells during the daily “show-and-tell” session, led by experienced wildlife staff.

Go inside the museum and check out its permanent and rotating exhibits. Walk through the Spirit of the West exhibit and check out recreations of a Northern Paiute shelter, a French trapper’s camp, an Oregon Trail wagon and more scenes from the frontier. Check out a mining camp in Silver City and a settler’s cabin. Join a daily guided tour for the complete experience. Learn how to make 19th century crafts in a live demonstration.

Discover more than 20,000 artifacts in the museum’s collections. Browse artwork and photos from the High Desert. Peruse historical objects from the area’s Native American and early American settlers.

Outside, follow a short trail along a forest stream and through serene woodlands. See how settlers processed Oregon timber at the historically preserved Lazinka Sawmill. The homestead comes to life at Miller Family Ranch, where actors recreate life at the turn of the 20th century. Learn more about the area’s wilderness and meet a retired ranger at the vintage Ranger Station.

Visit the High Desert Museum daily, except for Fourth of July, Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. Take advantage of extended hours during the summer. Pay admission at the entry gate, with reduced admission for children and senior citizens.

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